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Edinburgh Fringe 2014

Crazy Glue

Single Shoe Productions

Genre: Physical Theatre

Venue: Assembly Roxy


Low Down

 Single Shoe productions have brought a charming hour of physical theatre to Assembly Roxy using their voices to generate a live sound scape, accompanied by a score of 20th century popular classics, to tell the story of two love birds whose domestic bliss is shattered by personal tragedy.


 “Just like Charlie Chaplin all over again. Fantastic” said one of my fellow audience members at the end of this show. Crazy Glue has echoes of a silent film; all the elements of the story are there for you to see. Happy people smile, surprise is shown with big wide eyes, sexual desire with a lolling tongue and a goofy grin. Charlie Chaplin isn’t quite the right reference though – too saccharine – the physical dexterity, split second timing and slapstick violence are more reminiscent of Buster Keaton or the Keystone Cops.

 Performers Filipa Tomas and Bradley Wayne Smith working as Single Shoe Productions devised Crazy Glue from Etgar Keret’s short story of the same name. They have used clowning, mime and dance to lift the story from the page and in doing so have succeeded in creating a theatrical experience accessible to a universal audience, irrespective of their nationality. The theme is as old as the hills so easy to follow whatever your background and language.

 The duo are very talented and deliver two highly polished performances as a cocktail bar waitress (Tomas) who catches the eye of one of her customers (Smith). After a whirlwind romance they settle down to a life of knitting, the sports pages, longed-for parenthood and apple pie. Just as the sugary sweetness of the piece begins to irritate the tone abruptly changes and what then emerges is a character driven tale of how to people who are crazy in love (and hate) cope, and don’t cope, with the crap hand life deals them.

Assembly Roxy downstairs studio is a perfect space for the piece as an audience on raked seating view a box like stage which serves well as a movie screen. Singe Shoe have kept it simple so that three orange cubes act as table and chairs and the rest of the tiny apartment is imagined. Dressed like cartoon figures (Tomas with a homage to Olive Oyl) the actors start out (deliberately) as cardboard cut-out star struck lovers but like Romeo and Juliet get much more interesting and rounded as tragedy strikes.


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